More Than Experience

Sunday Morning Musings:   I suppose I could say that most weeks hold something strange or unusual for me, and write it off as a normal week.  Yet for some reason this week feels extra strange.  Usually, by this time of the week, I have been able to process the week past and come to some kind of understanding of the feelings going on in my head and/or my “gut”.  However, this has not happened for me, or maybe it is just taking longer than I had hoped.

Processing of external and internal events has become a natural part of life for me.  I was once told that “experience is the best teacher”.  As a teacher I understood what was being said about the importance of actually doing something.  If I have four apples and give two away, I am left with two apples.  It doesn’t get much simpler than that.  Yet, if I spend time talking about this action, or “reflecting” on the experience, there is so much more happening.

Continuing the above example, I can do the arithmetic (or mathematics, I am never sure).  But what if I spend some time thinking about why I gave away two apples?  Hypothetically, if I was a good capitalist I should have sold the apples to make a profit.  A compassionate person might have given them all away.  If I lived in a Socialist society I might have been expected to give them to the government who would then share them with someone.  Reflection can cause me sometimes just to think I should have stayed in bed!

Now, of course, there are large issues at stake in life which often give us greater cause to spend time thinking about how and why we react in the ways we do. I have been told by some of my friends that they no longer watch the news.  Their reasons offered vary.  Some are just overloaded with the “bad news” by which they feel constantly bombarded.  Others aren’t sure what to believe or who to trust anymore.  Despite the fact that we are told that “good news” is no news, many still long to believe that life is better than we are told.  Good things continually happen around us, but rarely do they make the headlines and often get used as “feel good” stories trying to brighten up the dark news we have just heard.

Each of us is confronted daily by events in our own lives that require us to spend time asking ourselves our reasons for feeling affected.  Yet, I find myself wanting the “experts” to explain situations to me.  I want the political pundits to tell me why someone has done something – or what the actions mean?  When something involves the education system I turn to those I expect have answers to my queries. The same happens in the church.  A while ago Pope Francis commented about the wording of The Lord’s Prayer or the “Our Father”.  For some, the comment created a “tizzy”, while I am sure others were unaware of his comments and the ensuing discussions.

Naturally, daily events mean something different to each of us.  Some events will affect us differently also.  What becomes important is that we take the time to ask ourselves about our thoughts and feelings around those events.  Sometimes it becomes a matter of priorities and spending the time to sort out not only what events have happened but which and why they matter at all.

Or maybe, I can just pretend that nothing has happened at all and that it makes no difference at all.

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